Retail is different to most other type of sales. In some ways it’s easier because people are actively looking for something and they’re already in the buying mood. All you have to do is wait for people to walk through the door. Some people who work in retail don’t really see it that way. Maybe it’s because they are rookies, or maybe it’s because they’ve never done anything else. Either way, retail sales is a noble profession and a form of art like any other form of sales. Here are the five most common mistakes you should try to avoid.
#1 they’re just looking
A lot of sales reps in retail think that people will approach them if they are interested in buying. “Sure the boss says we need to ask them how we can help, but usually they’ll just say they’re just looking. If they want something, they’ll come to you.”
Wrong, rookie! Everyone who’s in your shop wants something. Unless they are there to support someone else, that’s why they are there. You have to approach everyone. Some will say they are ‘just looking’ but all that means is that they haven’t made up their mind on what they want. Maybe you can help them. The more people you approach, the more you’ll sell. It’s that simple.
#2 too many options
Never ever give someone more than two options. Give your customer more than two options and he will be confused and a confused customer is never a buying customer. Before you start offering options, make sure you fully understand your customer’s wishes. Does he want a certain size or color; is he looking for a certain spec? What is his price range?
Once you’ve asked all your questions and you think you know everything about the customer’s wishes, ask him again: “do you have any other preferences?” “Is there anything else you want?” Once you know absolutely everything about your customer’s preferences, give him the two closest options.
#3 who really decides?
Don’t sell to the wrong person. You have to know who the real decision maker is because the decision maker has the ultimate say. It usually is either the person who will use your product, or the person that has to pay for it. Sometimes two or more people make a mutual decision, but they have different preferences. Make sure you satisfy all their needs.
#4 Don’t give up on the up sell
A lot of sales reps are afraid they will lose the “main” sale if they lose the up sell. They are discouraged by this thought and because of that reason they only make half an effort to make an upsell, if any at all! The chances of losing the main sale if you lose the up sell are minimal. Go for the up sell, every single time.
#5 don’t lie about the competition
Some retail rookies will say that the competition doesn’t offer any warranties or that their service is not good. They will make up bad things about their competition to make their own product look good. Don’t do this. Not only is it very unprofessional, it also makes you less trustworthy. Besides, your prospect may have a different experience with the competition which means they will know you’re lying plus they can very easily compare different services online at the tip of their fingers.